Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow, snow and Indonesia

As the title suggests, there is a lot of snow here! We're fighting with about 14 or so inches, which is nothing compared to other places I know, but it's a lot for us Central Ohioans! So, I'm taking a mental vacation from the snow and posting some Indonesia pictures and talking about the trip. After all, this is a diving blog too! So let's get started.

We flew into Singapore before going on to Manado, so we took the opportunity to spend a day there. It is a lovely city, and I strongly suggest staying a day or 2 if you ever have a layover there. Very cosmopolitan, clean, a lot of shopping, and so many other things to do as well. We got up and took a taxi to the Bukit Timah Nature Preserve and hiked to the summit (it was only about 550 feet!), the highest point on Singapore. On the way up, we saw lots of monkeys, I believe they were black tailed Macaques, and a couple of large monitor lizards.

The Macaques were so much fun to watch, there were babies jumping on each other and from tree to tree, so adorable! Then after dark we rode the Singapore Flyer, the tallest observation wheel in the world. I was nervous, since I'm not a huge fan of heights, but, you couldn't even tell it was moving, and the views were amazing. The top picture was taken on the Flyer.

We then flew on to Manado, North Sulawesi, Indonesia. The hour long taxi ride from the airport to the resort was a bit harrowing, but we made it. The traffic laws there are a little, well, not so much laws, as mild suggestions.

Tasik Ria Resort is beautiful, lovely rooms, huge pool, a swim up bar. And the diving was amazing as expected! Spectacular wall dives every day at the Bunaken Marine Park and a really nice house reef.

Saw my first cuttlefish! They are absolutely amazing! There were actually 2 of them, on the Tasik house reef, in about 10 feet of water! We just followed them around taking pictures for like 15 minutes. They weren't afraid of us, they actually just seemed a little annoyed by us, lol. I could follow them around watching for hours, they are just so interesting! They change color and texture instantaneously. Thankfully we saw several more in Lembeh later in the trip, and they never failed to completely fascinate me. I just love sea turtles, they're so serene and beautiful. This one was just hanging out on the reef napping.

We then went to the other side of North Sulawesi to the port city of Bitung, on the Lembeh Straits. We stayed at the Kungkungan Bay Resort, it was absolutely beautiful. We were in a beachfront bungalow all to ourselves. It was like staying in paradise. And the diving? Oh, the diving... I think the pictures illustrate it pretty well. I fell completely in love with muck diving in Lembeh. It's like a treasure hunt on every dive. I can't wait to go back!Oh, and this is Jeff vs. the clownfish. These little guys can be nasty! They kept bumping the camera, our masks, and one of the little buggers even bit my finger when I ventured too close to their anenome! Needless to say, by the end of the trip, Jeff and I were both pretty irritated with this particular species of "Nemo" fish!

So, there's a wrap up of our Indonesian vacation, we logged 25 dives over 13 days, and took around 1300 pictures. The above are just a few, and you can see a bunch more on my Flickr page, if you're so inclined, just be warned, there are about 150 of them!

I have to say, looking at these pictures did make me feel at least a little better about having to go outside in the 30 mph winds, at least temporarily. Stay warm wherever you are!

1 comment:

  1. Wow!! What a cool adventure. I'm hoping to get to Manado when we head back to Indonesia this next year as that is where my wife's family is from. Your picture of the clown fish is amazing!! It's like right off the pages of a National Geographic. Who would of thought that Nemo would be so aggressive. He seemed so nice in the movie.